Marley & Me
It’s bad enough the dog dies at the end (whoops, spoiler alert), but before that happens there’s a miscarriage scene. Jennifer Aniston isn’t known for her acting range (she boldly plays the role of Jennifer Aniston in every movie), but she nails it with the look on her face when the doctor tells her the baby she’s carrying has no heartbeat. She exemplifies denial, desperation, shock, and despair all in one look. Forcing the viewer to look directly at the face of a miscarrying woman is a huge step towards getting silently suffering mothers out of the closet, but if you’re already hormonal or going through your own devastating loss, don’t watch this movie. I hear Air Buds has cute dogs and zero miscarriage scenes.
The Time Traveler’s Wife
While not scientifically accurate in any way (did the title not tip you off to that?), Rachel McAdams plays a woman who experiences multiple miscarriages. Skip it. If you want to see a shirtless Eric Bana, I recommend The Hulk.
This is the best and the worst movie to watch while TTC or going through a miscarriage. Why is it the worst? Because Ellie miscarries and/or is infertile and has no choice but to live a childless life (cue depressing sobs). Why is it the best? Because Ellie miscarries and/or is infertile and she still has a wonderful life (cue happy sobs). She still has an adventure. She still has one of the greatest cinematic love stories of all time. But it’s probably a good idea to avoid any animated movie while grieving or suffering because CRYING. Oh the crying. Bambi? Nope – dead mom. The Fox and the Hound? Nope – adopted mother is forced to leave her fox baby alone in the woods. Dumbo? Nope – mama says goodbye to her baby while behind bars. I could go on. You’re sick, Disney. Truly sick.
Another movie in which the miscarriage storyline gets a seal of approval, but it still may not be a good movie to watch for fear of what it’ll stir up. The movie ends without knowing if Celia ever realizes her dream of having a child. This is a reality for miscarriage sufferers – we never know if the last miscarriage will truly be our last or if we’re destined to only bury our babies. While the tree-planting scene is beautiful, it’ll make for a tear-soaked tissue. Proceed with caution.
Charlize Theron and Diablo Cody. Should be hilarious, right? Don’t watch. Just DON’T. WATCH. If you want the movie spoiled, keep reading. Basically we start with a washed up Charlize Theron who clearly has a drinking/showering problem. During her daily hangover, she opens an email from an old boyfriend announcing his new baby. This makes her go, um, a little nuts. She goes back to her hometown to try to get him back and ruin things for everyone and is generally just a miserable person. Then all is revealed at the end when Charlize’s character sloppily announces that her and the ex were pregnant years before but they lost it because of her “broken body.” Don’t watch. Just DON’T. WATCH.
What to Expect When You’re Expecting
The miscarriage storyline is one of the worst of all time. While Anna Kendricks’ character shows some blink-and-you’ll-miss-it sadness following her late term miscarriage, mere months later she runs into her former baby daddy and it’s all water under the baby bridge. She’s confident she’ll “be here again when the time is right.” Roll credits. So these are the standards miscarriage sufferers have to live up to – you should be looking at your uterus as half full, not half empty! Also, the miscarriage happened to the only couple who weren’t in a relationship and weren’t ready for a child. Most viewers can deal with the uncomfortable subject by chopping it up to what’s “for the best anyway.” Screw you, What to Expect. You’re a dick.
Legends of the Fall
Okay. Let me break this down for you. About to spoil the entire movie.
The main character, Susannah, loses her fiancé in WWI, and then helplessly falls in love with his brother played by Brad Pitt (shocking, I know). They romp around the family ranch in Montana and she wistfully rattles off what their babies’ names will be when they have them. Red. Flag.
After some time passed (and because he’s a wild man?), he decides to leave her and go on some kind of worldly adventure. While he’s packing up his horse and breaking her heart, she asks him if he would still be leaving if she had given him a child. He said yes, but still… ouch.
She then marries the oldest brother, played by similarly hunky Aiden Quinn. More time passes, and love-of-her-life Brad Pitt decides to come home from his adventure and marry a Disney Indian princess look-alike and they immediately pop out two kids. In case it’s not obvious that Susannah has fertility issues, Susannah explains in a letter that she and her husband wanted a child of their own, but haven’t been successful. Not long after Susannah meets Brad Pitt’s beautiful children, she calmly excuses herself to her bedroom, cuts off her hair and shoots herself in the face.
I think we’re done here. Watch Fight Club instead.
Photo used under Creative Commons